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Can I Install Laminate Flooring Under A Bathroom Toilet And Sink?

by Bestlaminate
Published: Updated: 23 comments 10 minutes read

Installing laminate flooring in a bathroom may seem overwhelming, but don’t worry! With the proper preparation and know-how, you’ll know exactly how easy it is to install laminate flooring under a toilet and sink in your bathroom. Laminate flooring is a fantastic choice for bathrooms as it’s budget-friendly, long-lasting, and simple flooring solution to maintain. No grout lines to worry about here! While it’s not waterproof, we’ll guide you through the installation process to minimize water damage.

In this article, we’ll give you a step-by-step guide on how to install laminate flooring under toilets and sinks, throughout the whole bathroom, and helpful tips and tricks for a stunning and practical floor. Get ready to transform your bathroom with confidence!

First, Remove the Bathroom Toilet and Other Fixtures

Before you begin installing the laminate flooring, you must remove any fixtures in your bathroom, such as the toilet or pedestal sink. If you have a cabinet built into the bathroom, you will leave it and install flooring around it. Be sure to turn off the water and properly remove each fixture.

Once the flooring is installed, the toilet and other fixtures will be placed back on top of it. Removing these fixtures makes the installation process much easier and ensures a better fit.

Next, Prepare Subfloor for Laminate Flooring Installation

The subfloor is the foundation upon which the laminate flooring will be installed. If the subfloor has any defects or is not level, it can cause problems down the line, such as buckling or warping. To prepare the subfloor, follow these steps:

  1. Clean the subfloor: Remove any old flooring, moldings and sweep or vacuum the subfloor to remove any dirt or debris.
  2. Check for defects: Look for loose boards, squeaks, and other defects in the subfloor. Fix any issues before proceeding.
  3. Check for levelness: Make sure the subfloor is level. If there are any high spots, sand them down, and if there are any low spots, use a leveling compound to even them out.
  4. Check for structural integrity: The subfloor must be able to support the weight of the laminate flooring and any furniture or fixtures. If there are any structural issues, such as rot or shifting, they must be addressed before installing the laminate flooring.
  5. Check for moisture: Moisture can cause serious damage to laminate flooring. Check for moisture in the subfloor and take appropriate measures to mitigate it if necessary.

Select Laminate Flooring Suitable for Installation in the Bathroom

Now that your subfloor is ready, it’s time to select laminate flooring suitable for your bathroom. With its wide range of styles and colors, you can find one that perfectly matches your aesthetic. Not only does laminate flooring come in beautiful finishes and styles, but it also offers unbeatable durability. Plus, it’s much more budget-friendly compared to hardwood floors. Laminate flooring is resistant to fading, wear, stains, burns, scratches, and even moisture. That means it can handle even the busiest bathroom spaces.

If moisture protection is a top priority for you, look for laminate flooring with increased moisture resistance. The latest generation of laminate flooring can withstand up to 72 hours of water exposure. Alternatively, you may also want to consider 100% waterproof vinyl flooring. It comes in an incredible variety of types and styles, offering another great option for your bathroom flooring needs.

Trust us, the right laminate or vinyl flooring can transform your bathroom into a stylish and durable space. Follow our guide to learn more about laminate flooring.

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Select and Install Laminate Flooring Underlayment

Underlayment is a must-have for reducing noise and protecting against moisture damage. It will also help keep the laminate flooring from getting cold and be more comfortable underfoot. Before you choose an underlayment, consider these important factors depending on what type of laminate you select.

Follow these installation tutorials for easy, step-by-step guidance to installing underlayment. When it comes to installing around a toilet, you will want to leave a small gap between the flange and underlayment for the silicone protective seal.

Installation around the Bathroom Sink, Cabinets and Vanity

If you’re installing cabinets or a vanity that is fixed to the flooring, you will install these first before the flooring. If you have a floating vanity cabinet, you will install the floor first. Follow our recommendations here. 

Follow these installation tutorials for easy, step-by-step guidance to installing underlayment. When it comes to installing around a toilet, you will want to leave a small gap between the flange and underlayment for the silicone protective seal.

How to Install Around Toilets and Drains?

Now it’s time to install the laminate flooring. Precision cutting is key in this type of installation. You will need to cut the flooring around the drains fairly close to the hole. This will require a jigsaw to cut the flooring in a circular pattern. An easy way to get the size correct is to use a piece of paper as a template and trace onto the flooring boards.

When you install the toilet, screw it down snugly, but not overly tight. If you’re installing a pedestal sink, while it’s heavy, the floor should still be able to expand and contract properly.

The most important thing is not to push the baseboard too tight to the floor, and to leave the proper expansion gap when you install the flooring and molding. This is what allows the floor to expand and contract with changes in temperature and humidity.

Since this is a moisture rich space, you can add waterproof glue to the locking system joints while installing, as well as around the edges of the toilet and sink. This will help create a more water-tight seal between planks, which is where the floor will be the most prone to water damage.

Finishing Touches

Finally, it’s time to add the finishing touches to your new bathroom floor. Install any necessary molding to cover the expansion gap around the edges of the room. This will give your laminate flooring a polished and professional look.

We understand that choosing the right type of moldings can be overwhelming, which is why we’ve gathered all the necessary information to help you make the best decision for your needs.

Reinstall the Toilet, Sink and Other Fixtures

After moldings are added, you can reinstall any other bathroom fixtures. Be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions for installing the toilet and other fixtures. If you’re installing a pedestal sink, make sure that the base is secured to the wall.

In conclusion, installing laminate flooring in a bathroom and under a toiler and sink is a manageable DIY project that can add style and functionality to your space. With the right preparation and technique, you can achieve a beautiful and durable bathroom floor that will withstand daily use. Remember to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and take appropriate measures to mitigate moisture damage. Good luck and happy renovating!

If you have additional questions on how to properly install laminate flooring in a bathroom, feel free to ask them in the comment section below! We would love to help you!

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Jim July 24, 2019 - 9:04 pm

In lower level bathroom I removed the toilet which was mounted to the concrete floor. The previous owner had the bathroom carpeted, which went around the toilet but not under it. I removed the carpeting and installed some vinyl plank flooring (Lifeproof from Home Depot). My question is about the mounting flange that was on the floor, specifically regarding the height relative to the toilet. Since the new toilet will be mounted on top of the flooring, it will be about 1/4″ higher than the one I removed. Is this a problem? Or will the wax ring take care of the gap? where should the mounting flange be located relative to the mounting surface for the toilet?
PS I do not want to move or refasten the plastic flange that holds the bolts to mount through the toilet base because we have in floor heating and I do not know exactly where the tubes in the floor are located. Thx

Alana Kane July 29, 2019 - 1:54 pm

Hi Jim, thanks for the question! You will have issues if the flooring is above the where the toilet sits. The wax ring will not be enough, as it compresses over time. From my knowledge, you will need to find a spacer and remount the flange so it is 1/4″ above the flooring. This video seemed very helpful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KP-31BrkN1w. I understand you do not want to move the flange, so this could be something you will want to use a plumber for.

Ava December 20, 2018 - 1:58 am

For those planning to install a new floor, toilet or sink, you should remember to install laminate flooring under the sink or the bathroom. The floor helps you to fix the sink and toilet without leaving any gaps on the floor.

Carola May 27, 2018 - 10:03 am

Hi, I just purchased Lifeproof from Home Depot for my master bathroom. Since it is a floating system I am worry about the weight of the double vanity (about 300 lbs) over the floor considering that the planks expand. What do you think

Alana Kane May 29, 2018 - 10:26 am

Hi Carola, great question! Does the vanity come the whole way to the floor like a kitchen cabinet? If so, we’d recommend installing the vanity first and then doing the flooring so it does not go under the vanity.

Scott Postle September 19, 2018 - 11:39 am

What about a vanity that has feet? Would that be ok if I put felt pads underneath so the floor has at least a small opportunity to move around a little for expansion and contraction? Thanks!

Viena September 20, 2018 - 10:09 am

Hi Scott, thanks for reaching out. A vanity that has feet in no problem. Keep in mind, when you install the toilet in your bathroom, the floatation of your flooring will be very limited once the toilet is bolted to the ground. Please make sure there is a transition piece separating the bathroom from the rest of your home, to prevent any buckling or damage to the joints outside of the bathroom. Please let us know if you have any other questions!

Kevin May 12, 2018 - 3:19 pm

I have some beautiful ebony plank laminate flooring left over from doing my kitchen/dinning area and would like to install the remainder in my upstairs bathroom to tie it all in but I’ve noticed over the past few yrs I’d get a little buckling at the seam if I left a little standing water that went unnoticed. Is there something I can do to prevent that other than just gluing them at install? Thx

Alana Kane May 15, 2018 - 12:20 pm

Hi Kevin, unfortunately not. Since a laminate is made from wood, it will absorb moisture, water and humidity causing it to buckle. We only recommend using laminate in a half bathroom. In this case, we’d recommend going with a vinyl or tile floor.

Susan Campbell April 7, 2018 - 2:50 pm

My laminate has sinking and soft spot near my toilet.

Alana Kane April 9, 2018 - 3:50 pm

Hi Susan, we’re sorry to hear about this! I have a feeling this may be a water issue. Did you notice any leaking or sweating of your toilet?

Mattzoo July 23, 2019 - 3:30 pm

You have to use a waxless toilet ring on a floating floor!

Alana Kane July 24, 2019 - 8:09 pm

Thanks for the tip!

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